It has been several months since I first learned of my acceptance into the Elon Centre Abroad in London, England, and I must say I never dreamed it would ever be this close. I have spent the summer working endless hours lifeguarding and teaching swim lessons, trying to achieve the optimal tan and relaxing with my friends and family. But perhaps the largest amount of time has been devoted to learning about the city of London and delving into its rich, diverse culture, its history and its people. I have never been to Europe, or any other country outside the United States, so it might be safe to say that I have been quite guarded against the vast world I have not had the chance to explore. There no words to describe the gradient of emotions I have experienced, ranging from intense anxiety when I thought I would never receive my U.K. Visa in the mail, to immense happiness and excitement when I started to think about the opportunities that lie ahead in London. I find it overwhelming when I think about all of the sites, museums, cities, people, landmarks, etc. that I absolutely MUST pack in the time period between my arrival in London and my departure at the commencement of the study abroad program. However, I have no doubt that any experience will be a new and exciting one, so while getting everything in would be ideal, I refuse to miss out on something because I am too eager to move on to the next thing on my agenda. With this, I am making it my goal to take everything in, using each new experience, each new obstacle that might come with cultural change, as an opportunity to increase my knowledge and improve myself.